Today: Jun 19, 2024

Questionable progress in the medical world


Did you ever wonder why it seems as though we have not made enough progress in the medical field, considering how far we have come in other disciplines? I have thought about this idea frequently throughout my life.
My mother suffered from a stroke and was taken to Yale-New Haven Hospital, a place that prides itself on being one of the leading hospitals in the nation for stroke care. However, Yale failed to diagnose my mother as having a stroke until it was too late to administer the drug tPA, a medication that breaks down blood clots, which may have alleviated the long-term effects of the stroke. This medication only works if given within the first few hours of showing stroke symptoms.
One of my closest friend’s mother died from stomach cancer, and just recently a childhood friend of my father’s died due to ovarian cancer. Unlike some aspects in the medical world, it amazes me how far we have come in terms of our technological advances. It seems as though in short periods of time, technology is outdated and we are being serviced with the new technology. We have cell phones with artificial intelligence, yet we still do not have cures for certain diseases.
I was watching a TV show where people were discussing an innovative product. Supposedly, scientists had developed a hangover pill, and they were trying to get it approved by the FDA. The person on this show explained how society spends so much money on trivial things while we still don’t have cures for cancers. I thought that was interesting. My father always said that there is no money in curing people, and it is true. It’s all supply and demand. People pay for anti-aging remedies, diet pills and hangover quick fixes, yet we can’t cure things like Leukemia or AIDS.
You would think that we have made more progress by now, but we are still stuck and we cannot cure things like breast cancer. E News! host Giuliana Rancic had breast cancer, and I commend her for her treatment plan. She decided to undergo a double mastectomy to get rid of the cancer. But why is it that she had to resort to that? As advanced as we are, we are still in the Dark Ages with our cures, having to resort to mutilating our bodies to get rid of disease. We are forced to cut open our bodies or poison ourselves with chemotherapy as a treatment plan. I am saddened and disappointed in how we “treat” diseases.
My father’s childhood friend who passed away from cancer was only 46, the same age that my dad is. After finding out she had ovarian cancer, I asked a series of questions and researched the disease on the Internet. I discovered a disheartening fact: According to the American Cancer Society, “If ovarian cancer is found (and treated) before the cancer has spread outside the ovary, the five-year survival rate is 94 percent. However, only 15 percent of all ovarian cancers are found at this early stage.”
No one should die from this disease, but since it is most often found too late, a woman’s chance of survival decreases dramatically. In an outrage I questioned: how did the doctors not see this? Don’t they check for this? Why haven’t we found a diagnostic tool where we can easily screen for these things without it being so invasive?
Ultimately, I believe we need to spend more time and money devoted to the development of cures for cancers and diseases. I do not think society should accept the notion that it is impossible to know what causes certain cancers and that we do not have cures at this time. But we need to do our part to help the cause. If we spent even a fraction of the money that we spend on frivolous things like our daily cup of coffee, then we would have so many more resources that could lead to cures or at least more humane treatments.

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